The Flowering Desert

Opera in 2 acts

Music by Daniel Blanco Albert

Libretto by Roxanne Korda

The Flowering Desert is a surround sound immersive experience, with a tailor-made music of the spheres, which puts the audience inside the mind of a scientist and the recently discovered TRAPPIST-1 solar system, exploring the border between fact and imagination. Created in collaboration with Dr. Amaury Triaud and using world leading research, this initiative brings immersivity in opera to a cosmic level using the planetarium creatively at all levels with live music performed in a spheric 180º setting with bespoke curated projections and sound design.

Created by Infinite Opera

with the support of:


 University of Birmingham

Royal Birmingham Conservatoire

Thinktank Planetarium



with special thanks to:

Dr. Amaury Triaud


Art and science, two different facets of the same question, finding out what we are and who we are.

            Dr. Amaury Triaud.



Planet E from the TRAPPIST-1 system. It is tidally locked with its Mother Star. Therefore, one half of the planet faces the star and is constantly lit, while the other, in constant shadow, faces the immensity of the universe.



Exocomet that after eons of wandering across the universe, returns to TRAPPIST-1 with a vital piece of information.


Mother Star 

A red dwarf star in an almost sempiternal process of combustion.


The Measurer 

A scientist temporarily living in the observatory of La Silla, Chile. In the breakthrough of a discovery, and after witnessing the phenomenon of the flowering of the Atacama desert, they wonder about the possibility of life in the universe.




Overture - The Measurer lies down at night observing the flowered Atacaman desert and its sky, wondering about the universe.


Scene 1 - Xoe, the comet, returns to the TRAPPIST-1 system. It tells Pantele that it is being observed looking for life. The two halves of the planet reflect about themselves, finally deciding to become that what is being searched.


Mélodrame 1 - In the desert, the Measurer is doubtful over the search for life.


Scene 2 - Pantele asks its Mother Star for help.


Mélodrame 2 - News from the observatory. The Measurer, however stays looking at the sky and at the Earth.


Scene 3 - Pantele asks Xoe for help. The planet needs to generate a magnetic field through tidal heating to defy the power of the Mother Star.


Mélodrame 3 - At the observatory, the Measurer witnesses a unique event, a triple transit of the planets C, E and F.


Scene 4 - Xoe proceeds to make Pantele a habitable planet.



Mélodrame 4 - The Measurer realises that life could be possible in TRAPPIST-1, and therefore, in the whole universe.

What people say...

So creative & charming. 


Very interesting immersive experience


I really enjoyed the opera. Very ethereal :)


It was wacky fun


Helped to conceptualise the drama and power of astrophysics, personifying the scientific experience helps to find interest in understanding it.


From what I gather, the first full-length opera to *ever* be performed in a (UK) planetarium: a mesmerising and one-of-a-kind experience witnessing 'The Flowering Desert' at (the) Thinktank Planetarium - BRAVO to Infinite Opera and Daniel Blanco Albert!! 

Zygmund de Somogyi - Prxludes


(...) My mind has been blown away by how Roxanne Korda and Daniel Blanco Albert combine physics and music to create the opera 'The Flowering Desert' (...)

Luis Freijo


What a huge treat to have Infinite Opera performing underneath SUN tonight at Warwick Arts Centre

Warwick Institute of Engagement


Really enjoyable few hours learning about the sun using science and art. Really fascinating (and very nice refreshments!) A great idea…

Elga Riman


Opera under SUN. Amazing engagement at #NAM2022

Robert Walsh


We were so pleased to be able to include a performance of The Flowering Desert by Infinite Opera as part of our ‘See the Sun’ exhibit. The performances were atmospheric, evocative, intriguing, and fit the space and the artwork perfectly. As part of our celebrations of Coventry being the UK City of Culture 2021/22, we have worked hard to link together our world-leading research with creative forms of expression, the arts and new audiences. Infinite Opera were able to offer something unique in responding to research with high-quality artistic expression – something which has helped us attract new audiences to campus.

James Brown, 

Public Engagement Project Officer, University of Warwick 


The performance was moving and added another dimension to the event.


Interesting and interactive, well thought out activities and impressive display of the sun.


I thought both events were absolutely brilliant!


Fantastic event, wish it was over more days so we could have had a return visit with friends who saw our pics afterwards. 


Measurer - Pre-recorded Soprano 

Pantele - Mezzo

Xoe - Soprano

Mother Star - SATB + Pre-recorded SATB




French Horn




(Bass drum, Gong, Vibraphone,

Ocarina, Frame drum)







Planetarium lead



18th and 20th of May 2022

Thinktank Planetarium, Birmingham


Creative Team at the première:


Produced by Infinite Opera


Music by Daniel Blanco Albert


Libretto by Roxanne Korda


Projections by Leon Trimble


Planetarium lead - Colin Hutcheson


Movement direction and Costumes by

Alexander Kaniewski


Designs by

Amy Bradley, Niambi Robinson and Yuan Wang


Thinktank Planetarium - Birmingham

19 January 2023


National Astronomy Meeting #NAM2022

Warwick Arts Centre

12, July 2022


Thinktank Planetarium - Birmingham

18, 20, May 2022